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car woofers in the cabinet

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by realitycheck, Sep 23, 2005.

  1. realitycheck


    Sep 8, 2005
    Hey guys,
    I got a question for you and yes I searched and I read. I understand what you guys have been saying about the car subwoofers. I understood all of it. Has anybody tried it though? Has anybody took the time to actually build a box and tune it and everything that is MADE for their car audio subwoofers? To see whats its like?

    I just really want to know from someone who has actually done it. I mean in one instance the guy was doing the math and saying that one car sub would be like 122 decibels and that a 8x10 cabinet was like 125. I mean I may be wrong but isnt that 8 speakers compared to one. I mean I would automatically assume that 8 would be louder than one. But three decibels maybe im completely missing something here. Thats the reason im asking, I just really want to know if someone has actually took the time and tried it??
    Thanks, Realitycheck
  2. SnoMan

    SnoMan Words Words Words

    Jan 27, 2001
    Charleston, WV
    Let me preface by saying I've never used car subs or anything of that sort.

    But to my point, if car subs were better--thats what everyone would be using.

    I feel safe in assuming that several members of TB have tried it. I've never heard a positive opinion on their use from here, and that's enough for me to not waste my time and money on building one.

    Who knows, maybe you'd like em. But you can't tell until you test them, I myself, am not willing to take a financial risk like that.
  3. I've plugged directly into a triple ported car sub enclosure I have, and it's terrible sounding.
  4. ESP-LTD


    Sep 9, 2001
    You didn't search very hard; I have done it and Bgavin still does it.

    I built subs based on JBL-120's; about 2.25' tuned to 28hz. Each one was a 4 ohm box of about 92-93db sensitivity. I pushed a pair of them on a QSC RMX-1450 crossed over at 150hz under an Avatar B112 (old compact box with a Kappa 12). It should have been +/- 3db down to 30hz.

    It worked fine if a little quiet. I gave it up because I found that I had more than enough rumble but not enough mids/highs when everything was flat. Also I had complaints from band members that they couldn't hear me onstage. Rooms tended to cause me to cut the lows, and if I was going to do that, I could carry less boxes. I pulled the subs and put Eminence Delta 12LF's in them and retuned about 50hz and run them full range. The band is happier now.

    It's not a bad idea, but I was surprised that it wasn't a huge hit. If you are willing to carry a LOT of equipment and want the option of really rumbling lows, go for it.
  5. realitycheck


    Sep 8, 2005
    Well, I really like the low notes more than anything else anyways. I have a guy who is selling two audiobahn 12"s for $100 bucks. I may try it im not sure yet what im going to do. Let me ask a question is there a way to plug in to the cabinet then also have your signal running to the house system also. Thats what im playing off of right is the house system in my church youth room and its plenty for the amount of youth we have in their now. The guitar is playing off of this also. So can you run off of both?
  6. KSDbass


    Mar 25, 2005
    I thought you couldn't use car subs because they weren't meant to run on 12V
  7. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA

    Auto speakers don't run on 12V, the amps that power them do. Even 12V+ DC power amps still output the same AC current as a 110V AC power amp, because current to the speakers is always AC (otherwise they wouldn't work) and it varies depending the on the output of the power amplifiers. More current equals more volume.
  8. ESP-LTD


    Sep 9, 2001
    Well, you bass plugs into a preamp which is connected to a power amp (if you have a head or a combo, they are all wired up for you in the same box). Your power amp connects to the speakers.

    If you want your bass to go thru your amp as well as an outside system there are lots of ways to do it, but the exact procedure depends on what equipment you have and what points in the signal chain it allows you to patch signals from.

    The important thing about car audio subs is that they are SUBwoofers. You MUST biamp and only feed them a low frequency signal (they do virtually nothing above 400hz). This can also be accomplished lots of different ways, but the main idea is either you run a crossover at 'line level' (1V) which is usually built into your preamp, or at speaker level (25+v) which is what is normally built into cabinets with multiple sizes of drivers. The smarter way to do it is at line level.

    If a house system is available, the best thing to do is have minimum stage volume and let the house system handle making your bass heard.

    I don't think subs will do what you want. The low notes are 30-40hz, but they have harmonics that have a lot to do with how they are perceived, and the harmonics are probably what you want to amplify. A car audio sub will change the tone of your low notes by adding a lot of 30-40hz stuff, but not that much about the overall volume, IMHO.
  9. realitycheck


    Sep 8, 2005
    So what is biamp?
    Whats the best way to hook up the car subs? Or do you need all the info of amps and speakers and all that to make that decision?
  10. One cabinet I use is made from a car Woofer, rather than a Subwoofer. It's frequency response goes up to about 3000 Hz, and crossed over with a tweeter, it comes out just fine. The box is tuned to 45Hz, which makes a good balance between sound and portability.

    I could see where it would be a problem without a tweeter. Also, the efficiency is 93db, so it's not as loud as some others. In my case, that's not a problem, because I play in quietish venues mostly.
  11. i have done it with an old saphire 12" i had laying around.
    i put it in a box i made for another speaker but (like u wrote) wanted to know how it would sound.
    i have just tried it ones and the result was...well not so good.
    dull and dark with lots of lowbass but not really loud and lacking alot above 1khz.
    i tried different tunings (30hz, then 47hz). the higher tuning made it sound alittle fatter but not useful for my needs.
    my guitarplayer uses it as an monitor for his keyboard, and it works quite well for that.
  12. on the other hand. a friend of mine uses a PA 1x15"+horn and a gigantic folded horn sub as his basscabs.
    his amp is a line6basspod through a warwickamp.
    he gets quite nice sounds out of them so "if it works it works" i guess.
  13. haujobb


    Dec 16, 2004
    If you want dub lows, just buy a 2x18 pa enclosure, it will go just as low and is prolly 10db more sensitive.
  14. The Clap

    The Clap

    Jan 5, 2004
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Some posts in this thread are rife with misinformation. Just don't use car audio subwoofers for professional sound applications. It's a waste of your time and money in all but the most specific of circumstances because it just won't be loud enough.
  15. billfitzmaurice

    billfitzmaurice Commercial User

    Sep 15, 2004
    New Hampshire
    Owner, Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design
    If autosound and pro-sound drivers were interchangeable they wouldn't make both.
  16. ESP-LTD


    Sep 9, 2001
    Bi = 2
    Amp = Amplifier

    This means using a crossover to seperate the low frequencies from the high frequencies and sending each thru a seperate amplifier and then on to speakers specifically designed to do a good job with them.

    I like 14ga wire.

    You are asking how to connect 'car subs' to .... something you haven't specified. There are ways you can do it that will destroy your amplifier. I suggest you next search on 'ohms faq' or 'impedance'; it might save you a lot of money.

    There are lots of interesting experiments you can conduct with speakers, but judging by the questions you are asking, I would suggest you read awhile before trying any. IMHO the car sub thing will not do you any good without a lot of equipment you don't have.